27 Jun Rajendra Singh
Posted at 20:06h
Rajendra Singh is a highly regarded water conservationist from Alwar district, Rajasthan in India. Also known as the ‘waterman of India’, Rajendra won the Stockholm Water Prize, an award known as ‘the Nobel Prize for water’, in 2015. Previously, he won the Ramon Magsaysay Award for community leadership in 2001 for his pioneering work in community-based efforts in water harvesting and water management. He runs an NGO called ‘Tarun Bharat Sangh’ (TBS), which was founded in 1975 and has been instrumental in fighting slow bureaucracy, lobbying on mining and helping villagers take charge of water management in the semi-arid areas through johads, rainwater storage tanks and other innovative techniques. Starting from a single village in 1985, over the years TBS helped build over 8,600 johads and other water conservation structures to collect rainwater for the dry seasons, has brought water back to over 1,000 villages, and has revived five rivers in Rajasthan, Arvari, Ruparel, Sarsa, Bhagani and Jahajwali.
Rajendra is one of the members of the National Ganga River Basin Authority (NGRBA), which coordinates planning, financing and monitoring for the Ganges (Ganga). In 2008, The Guardian named him among its list of ‘50 people who could save the planet’. In the UK, he is a founder membership of an NGO called the Flow Partnership which aims to counter the negative effects of soil erosion and flooding.
Keynote presentation: River Rejuvenation in India
With over 28 years of working in Alwar region, Rajasthan we have revived 7 rivers, dry for eighty years by building more than 12,000 Johads at strategic points. The area has dramatically transformed, progressively becoming more productive, and healthier.
Major impacts of this sustained work have made the area a ‘water surplus zone’ with recharged aquifers, much improved ground water levels and more surface water. Using the inherent capacities of the community as well as introducing appropriate modern knowledge, it has also strengthened those communities’ capacity to adapt to existential threats such as climate change. Can this unique strategy of community-driven, decentralised water management, conservation and river rejuvenation be replicated nationally and internationally?
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Rajendra Singh is a highly regarded water conservationist from Alwar district, Rajasthan in India. Also known as the ‘waterman of India’, Rajendra won the Stockholm Water Prize, an award known as ‘the Nobel Prize for water’, in 2015. Previously, he won the Ramon Magsaysay Award for community leadership in 2001 for his pioneering work in community-based efforts in water harvesting...Read More »
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Keynote presentation: Aquatic ecosystem restoration: Lessons learned from ADB
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